Usually I am long on words. Today not so much. I am hot, tired, not feeling well but also feeling overwhelmed with everything that I am experiencing. Overwhelmed in a good way. I love the people here and I am loving my experience. Before I came I knew I would love the people but then, they didn’t have names.
Names like Davis and Joseph. The two boys who live across from us in the compound and who come by practically every day to see us, they sing for us, they help us with our dishes and they share their food, their lives, their seemingly endless smiles with us. They are like brothers to me and I have truly come to love them.
The other day I was cleaning the new apartment getting it ready for the other girls that are coming soon and both boys just showed up with rags ready to work. Emined came also and together we scrubbed the walls and the floors. It was fun working side by side with them and made a big job a joy. Even little Joshua followed their example and came to help.
We mopped the floor of our little kitchen and when we were finished the water was so dirty. Who knew that such a small space could contain so much dirt!
The other day I made my first solo trip to Kampala. I had a batch of jewelry that needed to be delivered to a customer and everyone was busy so I took it in. I took a taxi to Mukono and then a boda boda to our manager’s house to pick up the shipment. Then I took another taxi to Kampala and met Ashley at a great little restaurant called Dorman’s it was the most “western” place I have eaten at since I got here and it was heaven!
This blog post is kind of random, mostly a bunch of random memories. But stories of the crik always come up when my siblings and I get together. And it always leaves us laughing till our sides hurt as we remember.
When I was growing up we lived right next to a crik. And yes that is right, it was a crik. A creek was a cute little stream whose crystal clear water flows laughingly over smooth round stones as it gurgles through the canyon. What we lived next to was a crik. It was about 3 feet deep and 3 feet wide it’s banks made of stones covered in chain link. It ran directly behind the fence in our backyard and we thought it was OUR crik.
I have so many memories of that crik, from as early as I can remember everything went in that crik. And I mean everything.
Leftover food that had gone bad
A favorite toy of a brother who had teased you one too many times
A racy romance novel that I was reading to my sister, until she became too afraid that one of the mothers was going to find it.
My brothers peed in it from a hole in the fence
I even remember one time in particular a cousin of mine was particularly getting on my nerves. I had been sick with chicken pox and he had come with his mother who taught my siblings to play the piano. I was sleeping curled up in a chair when he snuck up behind the chair and scared me.
In my 6 year old mind all I could think was that I was so angry I thought I might turn inside out I already had a particular dislike of that cousin because I had to sit on his lap one day when we were piling too many people in the car. I had been mortified and he had teased me. So I had decided that I would hate him to my dying day.
So when he scared me I reacted in a very typical way for me. I threatened to kill him and boy did I mean it in the very fiber of my being.
“How are you going to kill me…” he taunted,
“I’ll…I’ll throw you in the crik!” I threw out the first thing that came to mind.
“I’m too heavy and you are too little…you won’t be able to get me over the fence.”
“Then I’ll bury your head in the sand in the sand box and you’ll die!” I said.
I’m stronger than you what if I won’t let you bury my head, he said, pushing the limits of my fury.
But I digress, the point of this blog post was to just share a memory that I had about the crik. I only just recently realized how strange and inappropriate it was that we threw so much stuff in the crik. I kind of thought thats what it was for and I wondered how other households got by without one.
My brothers even threw a tv in the crik at one point. Unlike most of the other things we threw in there that one didn’t sink into oblivion or float out of sight. It sunk but remained visible from the bottom when the water level was low.
THe boys had found a TV repair shop and found out they could easily break in. THey did and successfully stole a small TV. Then they got greedy and went back for something bigger. Also the little TV was only black and white and they wanted something with color.
So they went back and found a nice big TV. It was around midnight when they were crossing state street carrying their loot when they were stopped by a police officer.
“You boys taking your TV for a walk?” he asked them.
“Um…” no excuse came to mind fast enough, but the officer didn’t need one. He knew why they ewre running across the street carrying a TV.
He asked their ages, names and birth date. then he asked, where do you live?
The boys really didn’t want to answer that question. They didn’t want to be iin trouble with the parents.
Um we are here visiting from Oregon, they said.
um…they looked at each other, we are staying with our grandparents and we don’t know the address.
You are brothers? He asked, understandably with a good deal of scepticism since the coloring between the two boys was pretty different.
But you are both 13.
We are twins!
Twins… whose birthdays are 4 months apart?
The boys were caught and they knew it but they didn’t want to give up their address.
Come on I know where you live, the officer said, and he took them home.
Later after getting in trouble with the parents and lying about that being the only time they had stolen TV’s they threw the other one in the crik to avoid being caught.
Moral of the Story: If you can’t find it…its probably in the crik.